enfleshed is accepting submissions of blessings to be published in a small book alongside art and interactive prompts.The deadline for submission is September 20th. Submissions accepted for print will be compensated $100.
Time left for submission
BLESSINGS: WHAT WE MEAN
A blessing is an invitation to feel Held by the larger web of life, the cosmos, the lifeforce, the love that companions through the depths, without naiveté or toxic positivity. A blessing is an outpouring, a dedication, a consecration, an invocation, a summoning. Often blessings honor what is, or invite what can become to emerge. Blessings are honest, insightful, and nourishing. A blessing situates the reader in the larger story of the universe. A blessing doesn’t fix anything – it can sit with you where you are, or call you to elsewhere. A blessing might remind you of your power or invite you to let go. We hope our book of blessings for the depths will feel like someone trustworthy is holding your hands and looking you in the eyes as you journey through mystery, unknowns, or discernment.
Blessings belong to everyone. They are ancient. They are expansive. They have radical potential. They do not belong to any one tradition and neither will this book.
You may draw your attention to a blessing you need, or needed to receive but never did. You may turn your attention to another person, a whole community of which you are a part, creaturely life, all life. You may consider a blessing for pasts, futures, places, people, or experiences. You may be very specific – like a blessing for a small-town queer kid – or very general – like a blessing for anyone who feels lost.
Though some exceptions will be permitted, we are largely seeking submissions that de-center Christian language. While we hope to maintain a deep sense of spirituality throughout the entire publication, we encourage writers to do so with a minimal use of traditional God language, playing with more expansive and creative ways of pointing to the mystical and mysterious, the Divine, the Sacred, the ordinary magic of shared existence.
OUR THEMATIC GUIDES
Each blessing will be sorted into one of four sections: deep sea, deep space, deep spirit, deep soil. We are looking for particular resonances with the feelings, experiences, circumstances, etc of these depths.
Things that come to mind for us through these themes:
deep space – stardust, cosmic forces, becoming untethered, lostness, infinite possibilities, timelessness
deep soil – grounding, stillness, patience, death and decay, stuckness, growth, roots
deep sea – currents, weightlessness, mystery, monsters, surrender, strangeness
deep spirit – longing, desire, fear, passion, joy, dis/connection
Themes we imagine being related to any of the four – transformation, struggle, creativity, transition, loss, discernment, grief, healing, leaving, returning, the unknown/unseen/unfamiliar.
The overarching theme as reflected by the title is that we are Held throughout all of these depths.
LENGTH & FORMAT
Blessings can be in any format including stanzas, paragraphs, high resolution photos of handwriting, or other creative formats. In paragraph form, the total characters must not exceed 1245 (including spaces). In stanza, they must not exceed 23 lines, max 53 characters per line. Handwritten versions must be clearly and easily legible at this size: 3 inches wide x 4 inches tall
Blessing submissions should include a title with a max of 40 characters.
Submissions are welcome in any language, with accompanying English translations.
USE & COMPENSATION
Only a limited number of submissions will be selected for print publication. Selected authors will receive a copy of the final publication and be compensated with a $100, in acknowledgment and gratitude.
Additional entries will be shared on our website with permission of the author.
Multiple entries are welcome. Authors will be notified by mid October.
WHO CAN SUBMIT?
Anyone! You do not need to be a writer, a published author, a person of any particular spiritual or religious belief system or geography. As always, we hope to center themes and ideas that provoke nourishment, transformation, healing, and creative reimagining, and de-center themes and ideas that perpetuate injustice, the status quo, or cultural narratives that confine. We are especially interested in work that queers, work that is tender, honest, and orients us toward liberation.
Co-authors welcome – consider writing with your kid, your parent, your roommate, your friend, your beloved. $100 compensation can be split between writers.
Authors under the age of 18 will need to submit a consent form from a parent or legal guardian.
Blessings will be interspersed with commissioned art, as well as interactive elements encouraging intimate engagement with the book. We hope this book will be the kind of item people form a relationship with – carrying it from place to place, passing it to a friend, writing in the margins, personalizing, and perhaps especially, a source of blessing during difficult times.
Further questions or clarifications? Don’t hesitate to be in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org